DTRASH92 - DK Dance - DK Dance
- Publication date
"Hailing from Belorussia, Ambassador 21 are the latest addition to the ever-expanding DTRASH roster. Formed in the summer of 2001, they quickly established a name for themselves through radio play and their debut album “People Vs. Ambassador 21” sold out almost immediately. To show us why, DTRASH have released “Ambassador 21 Vs. The World” a compilation CD of their best material from their previous releases along side some new material.
From the opening of Not Thinking Frogs it should be immediately obvious why Ambassador 21 gained such notoriety, as the track erupts with a mushroom cloud of nu-metal guitars, rumbling, crunching electronics, distorted vocals and infernal choral loops. It should sound like Digital Hardcore, but it manages to escape the clichés and posturing, instead it embraces real punk ethics and aesthetics, giving it a much more raw and dirty edge. Still, though, it is the omnipresent kick-drum that drives the music with intense 200bpm rhythms, often being reduced to sheer texture by the speed and distortion; it sounds like rapid machine gun fire and is just as frightening.
Occasionally, though, on tracks such as Little Freedom and Cheerfully, Merrily and Impudent, they embrace more digestible structures with mid-paced 4/4 beats and more groove-oriented guitar work. These work well, so as to introduce some dynamics into the album, but it is when they are in full-on, pounding and hard-riffing mode that Ambassador 21 truly show their colours. Aside from the majestic opener, tracks such as Fuck All Systems and Cuznitsa, although the stand-out track of the whole album must be Skyphes with its sampling of Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings, coupled with thundering percussion, discordant guitars and the dual vocal assault of A21’s Natalia and Alexy whose European accent, with its trilling glottals and rasping vowels, lends an almost sexy edge to the music.
It would be unfair for me to draw any comparisons to Ambassador 21, as the closest I can think of is Placid [a band that I loathe]. Needless to say, they play fast, hard and dirty with an overarching sense of style that gives the music its unquantifiable charm. If I had to fault them at all, it would merely be in the production, which at times gets a tad too gritty [especially the guitars], but not so that it makes the music any less effective, as “Ambassador 21 Vs. The World” is a highly addictive listen. Showing us that digital hardcore can be fresh, exciting and unpretentious, it bodes well for the future of this exciting new band. " -INDUSTRIAL.ORG
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